As Cool as a Pickled Cucumber

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Three types of phytonutrients found in cucumbers provide us with valuable antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer benefits. Cucurbitacins, lignans, and flavonoids have been the subject of active and ongoing research to determine the extent and nature of their anti-cancer properties.

We are making two batches of non-fermented pickles with the first harvest of cucumbers that are thriving in our garden, and will savor the flavor of vitamin C, beta-carotene, and manganese that  these incredible vegetables provide us.  




Lycopene is a naturally occurring chemical that gives fruits and vegetables a red color. As you can tell by the photo, our tomatoes are loaded with the stuff. According to the American Cancer Society, a major claim for lycopene’s benefits is in the prevention and treatment of cancers of the lung, prostate, stomach, bladder, cervix, skin, and, especially, prostate. In support of these claims regarding cancer, proponents note that lycopene is a powerful antioxidant, a compound that blocks the action of free radicals, activated oxygen molecules that can damage cells, and that several scientific studies have found lower risk of cancer among people who eat lycopene-rich foods.

The bowl of tomatoes were grown in our garden, and we continue to harvest and eat them daily. With the triple digit heat that is expected to last until the 4th of July, I anticipate that we’ll be eating more of these lycopene rich fruits on a daily basis.

Beet Good or Beet Gone

Beet Good or Beet Gone

 We have begun to harvest the first round of beets that we started from seed and are impressed with both their size and color.   We eat them raw and grated in our green salads, roasted with carrots, and are contemplating pickling some should we have a need to preserve a bit of this year’s harvest.

Borscht is not out of the question, but having never attempted to make the dish before, I am a bit apprehensive about committing the root to a soup pot.

In the meanwhile, we continue to savor the flavor of this beloved and underestimated root vegetable and welcome suggestions for a beet recipe nouveau.

The root of the problem is the problem with the root.
It has a reputation of tasting something like a boot.
Having never tasted leather nor the shoes you wear on feet,
I say the gorgeous vegetable tastes exactly like a beet!

~T. Funk